AAPM/PCSS Free CME Webinar:

Opioid Prescribing Amidst Changing Cannabis Laws

Thursday, July 26, 2018
5-6 pm ET


Requires log-in and the completion of pre-test.


In a regulatory climate where clinicians are being urged to consider non-opioid treatments to manage chronic pain, the focus on medical cannabis has increased.

This activity will assist clinicians who are interested in integrating medical cannabis into their pain practices to evaluate, select, and counsel appropriate patients, to determine when and how to initiate/dose cannabis and wean opioids in patients on chronic opioid therapy, and to subsequently monitor patients. It will also prepare clinicians to assist patients to locate a reputable dispensary and guide them to select a route of administration and product that has an appropriate concentration and ratio of cannabinoids.

Although possession and use of cannabis remains illegal under US federal law, the state-level regulatory landscape around the legalization of medical and/or recreational cannabis use is rapidly evolving. Twenty-nine states, the District of Columbia, Guam, and Puerto Rico now permit medical cannabis use in certain clinical contexts, 9 of which have also legalized recreational use, and 17 states allow use of cannabidiol extract for particular conditions. With more states likely to follow suit as evidence supporting medical use continues to emerge, cannabis is becoming increasingly available. Although some states provide clinicians guidelines for recommending medical cannabis, there are no validated clinical guidelines on how to integrate this therapy into pain management.

Learning Objectives:

After completing this activity, participants should be better able to:

  1. Outline the regulatory implications of diverging federal and state laws surrounding medical cannabis
  2. Describe how opioid-cannabinoid system interactions impact the efficacy and safety of combining opioids and cannabinoids for chronic pain
  3. Formulate a strategy to select and counsel appropriate patients for medical cannabis, and guide them to locate a dispensary and select an appropriate product and route of administration
  4. Determine when and how to initiate/dose cannabis and wean opioids in patients on chronic opioid therapy


Larry C. Driver, MD
Professor, Pain Medicine
University of Texas - MD Anderson Cancer Center
Houston, TX

Timothy Furnish, MD
Pain Management Specialist
Assistant Professor of Anesthesiology
University of California, San Diego

Mark S. Wallace, MD
Pain Management Specialist
Chair, Division of Pain Medicine
University of California, San Diego

Continuing Education:
The American Academy of Pain Medicine (AAPM) provides a live webinar titled “Opioid Prescribing Amidst Changing Cannabis Laws” and offers continuing medical education (CME) for physicians. Successful completion requires that participants register for the webinar and complete a pre-test via polling during the live session, participate, and complete an online post-test and evaluation. Participants receive their CME certificates after they submit their evaluations online.

The American Academy of Pain Medicine is accredited by the Accreditation Council for Continuing Medical Education to provide continuing medical education for physicians.

Credit Designation:
The American Academy of Pain Medicine designates this live activity for a maximum of 1.0 AMA PRA Category 1 Credit(s)™. Physicians should claim only the credit commensurate with the extent of their participation in the activity.

Funding for this initiative was made possible (in part) by grant nos. 5U79TI026556-02 and 3U79TI026556-02S1 from SAMHSA. The views expressed in written conference materials or publications and by speakers and moderators do not necessarily reflect the official policies of the Department of Health and Human Services; nor does mention of trade names, commercial practices, or organizations imply endorsement by the U.S. Government.

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